According to Carfax, provider of used-car history, nearly one in five vehicles on the road in the United States have safety issues serious enough to be involved in federal recalls. This ratio translates to about 47 million cars on the road in need of repair (out of a total 258.5 million cars on the road), an amount up 27% from last year. Larry Gamache, Director of Communications at Carfax, recognizes a lack of action regarding a general response to vehicle recalls, citing the need for, “much hard work.”
Gamache also pointed out the troubling fact that the vehicle type with the highest rate of unfixed safety issues (1 of every 4.6) is the mini-van – a vehicle most often purchased to accommodate young, growing families. Sport Utility Vehicles (SUVs) come in second at one of every 5.1 SUVs on the road with open recalls, followed by pick-up trucks and cars, both at a rate of 1 in every 5.5 vehicles with an open recall.
The states driving the most vehicles with open recalls were, in descending order, Texas, Mississippi, Alaska, Utah, and West Virginia.
Considering that recalls are fixed at no cost to the consumer at car dealerships nationwide, it could be argued that the fault for the lack of repair of these safety issues falls on the consumer. However, it’s also apparent that notifying consumers of these recalls and safety hazards needs to happen more successfully and efficiently. The biggest problem in getting these issues resolved is that most car owners don’t even know they are driving vehicles with active recalls.
To help combat this issue, the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) launched their “Safe Cars Save Lives” campaign, providing what is essentially a vehicle recall database, searchable by VIN numbers or vehicle makes and models. An instant result produces any current or past recalls on vehicle parts associated with the VIN or make and model submitted.
NHTSA’s tool has the potential to save lives. In only the first 9 months of 2015, 26,000 lives were lost in traffic accidents, and while many of these accidents were caused by human error, others could be attributed to unresolved safety issues.
The Philadelphia personal injury attorneys at Messa & Associates are experienced at handling personal injury cases involving serious injuries resulting from defective products and motor vehicle accidents. Our extremely skilled team of personal injury attorneys and medical experts is dedicated to ensuring you receive proper compensation for your personal injuries. If you have been injured by a defective product, a recalled motor vehicle, or have endured any other type of personal injury, contact the personal injury attorneys of Messa & Associates for a free consultation. Call toll free at 1-877-MessaLaw, or submit a free online inquiry.
Joseph L. Messa, Jr. is the founding partner of Messa & Associates, P.C. He is an AV-rated attorney (highest rating available), listed in the Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers. Read More